I was asked to be part of a panel for Charity Comms earlier this week and I spoke about my fave subject – being a #CommsRebel. It’s an area that I harp on about all the time, so much so that I actually created a twitter account to get more comms rebels to join in on the conversation (@CommsRebel).
Following a webinar I hosted with Contact Monkey on how to unleash your inner #CommsRebel, I started speaking at various events on key things you can do to start revolutionising the way you work. So, I thought it might be useful to share three key tips that helped me to kick-start my CommsRebel journey.
- Ask the right questions. So often we take things on without questioning the rationale for it and we end up slogging our guts out for minimum return. Asking the right questions can really transform the way your leaders and peers approach you going forward. It can be a challenge when you’re faced into a JFDI situation but this is when you need to channel your inner rebel, take a deep breath and ask questions such as: “What are you expecting to achieve from this communications?” “How does this link in with business objectives?” “What is your budget?” “What behaviours are you expecting to change?” “Have you considered measurement?” Etc. The more confidence and experience you get, the easier it will be but always keep thinking WIIFM (What’s In It For Me) when you’re thinking about colleague comms. There’s so much noise and distraction these days that you need to ensure that every bit of comms you are working on links into the overall business strategy – otherwise what’s the point? Asking these questions is not about being a disrupter, lazy or awkward. You’re creating a two way dialogue that will allow you, together, to make the right choices for the organisation.
- Facing into conflict. Of course when you start asking questions you may face some conflict, especially with senior leaders. This is when you need to arm yourself with knowledge, data and case studies. Explain the rationale behind your questions, show them examples of departments where things have worked well and where they haven’t. This is why you need to know your organisation inside out and understand the people who work there. Unless you have a 100% trusted relationship with your leaders it’s unlikely they are going to believe your gut feeling. Keep up with your professional standards and make sure you keep on top of latest trends – all this will help you to build your Trusted Advisor status further!
- Measure like your life depends on it. Every time I mention measurement, I often see people’s eyes gloss over or the side eye roll. Measurement is genuinely the key to your success in an organisation. It’ll help build your case for change and allow you to see where you’ve made an impact (or haven’t). If you’ve never measured anything before then it’s likely you’ll face into some reluctance and even some push back but keep persevering. Don’t make it too complicated for yourself. Start small and pick an area where you can get hold of outputs as well as outcomes (one is meaningless without the other). Use it in everyday language and soon it’ll become the norm.
What other top tips do you have to unleash your inner rebel? Let me know below or tweet me @advita_p.